New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

"A Liturgy for Morning Prayer," Upper Room Worshipbook

Used by permission from the Book of Common Worship, © 2018 Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved. This prayer appears in “A Liturgy for Morning Prayer” in Upper Room Worshipbook.


Today’s Reflection

Life comes to us whether we’re ready or not. There will always be surprises we can’t anticipate and demands we can’t prepare for. I suspect that’s why one of the names of the Holy One is Immanuel, which means “God with us.” Or, as the Voice of heaven said to the apostle Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you” (2 Cor. 12:9). Faith is trusting that God’s grace is and will be enough. That is as ready as we’ll ever be.

—Mike Ripski, “Are You Ready?” Light of Lights: Advent Devotions from The Upper Room Daily Devotional Guide, compiled and edited by Robin Pippin (Upper Room Books, 2014)

Today’s Question

How does knowing that God is with us help you face difficult situations? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel (which means “God with us”).
—Matthew 1:23 (NIV)

Prayer for the Week

O God, during this season give us eyes to see all around us signs of Christ’s love breaking into the world. Amen. —Prayer by Diane Luton Blum
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Christmastime is not always merry and bright. Whether grieving a recent loss or feeling the sting of an old wound, many people have moments of darkness and sorrow during this season. Join us in praying for those who are hurting or share your own prayer request at The Upper Room Prayer Wall.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.


  • robert moeller Posted December 21, 2023 6:37 am

    Jesus doesn’t tell us that life will be problem free, but with God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we will make our way. I have and am experiencing that truth. Thank You, Lord.
    A very different time of year with rains that were in 20 minutes stronger that they were in Hurricane Irene.
    No snow, road to the ski area closed indefinitely due to rain caused damage. Have to see what happens next.
    Thankful we are warm and dry with access to the needs of life.
    Remembering the arrival of Emanuel long ago. Thankful that Jesus came and is with us.

  • Lou Posted December 21, 2023 9:00 am

    Knowing that God is with us is truly the only thing that can and does give me peace. I falter and lose sight of this at times but this daily meditation reminds me and pulls me back. Thank you Lord. Blessings to all this day as we prepare.

  • Julie Posted December 21, 2023 9:52 am

    I try to gain strength from this. But can’t help thinking at the end of the day I am the one facing consequences and no one is going to help me figure out what to do. I can seek God’s counsel and support but I must make and live with choices and decisions.

  • Jill Posted December 21, 2023 2:54 pm

    His Presence, His peace, His provision are things I cling to – and they enable me to face a variety of situations with confidence…not in myself, but in Him. I pray for wisdom and discernment and try to act in accordance with what I sense the Spirit leading me to do.
    I am at home, safe and secure with my kittens and my trusty ice machine. Yet again – a favorable outcome as my hamstring was not torn, and my bursa sac was removed and inflammation cleaned up. I am in more pain this time around – but rest in the fact of knowing I don’t have to return to school for 2+ weeks and I can just rest and heal.
    I hope to attend a Christmas Eve service with my best friend and god children. I will need transportation as I won’t be able to drive for at least a week.
    Hoping to settle into the quietness and reflection of this Advent season. Have not been able to do this well up to this point.

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